Adjusting

So I’m slowly getting back into the groove of things. M is firmly ensconced in her parish and is working greatly doing all sorts of good things. The girls are in day care, with G going to pre-school at the church in the morning, then heading to where H is for the afternoon. She adores it especially because she has lots of kids to play with and gets to do ballet (of sorts).

Daycare is already working its charm on us too–we’ve all got colds and H has an ear infection. Hey–the kids will pick up the bugs sometime, this just means we get them now instead of when they start to school.

I’m doing Matins and Vespers from the Anglican Breviary and I’m finding it very helpful. I’ve already had a number of ah-ha moments of the “oh, that’s why we do it that way…” and “that’s why that book separates those canticles that way…” variety. The AB is not the medieval Office cycle. (As any medievalist or liturgist will tell you, there never virtually nothing that is *THE* medieval anything–there are only medieval uses of certain times and places.) But, it’s the closest I’ve ever done and I’m tickled to be doing Matins in a form that much more closely approximates an early medieval use. I know the liturgies and how they work in the period I’m writing on for the diss but actually using something so close to them opens a whole new experiential dimension.

I’m hoping to actually do some writing and cleanup on ch 2 today. We’ll see if that happens.

The job starts Monday–I’m still figuring out transportation. I went down for the first class yesterday and that involved dragging the entire household out of bed at an ungodly hour to drop me off at the train station and that’s just not gonna work…

In terms of the class… *sigh* Good to know somethings don’t change… We were doing expansive metaphors for God. But let me fill you in on a secret: Creator/Redeemer/Sanctifier are *NOT* metaphors!! Imagination and creativity are very important in constructing and composing liturgy–but so are boundaries and the best boundaries are years and years of living in historic liturgies.

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About Derek Olsen

I'm a layman within the Episcopal Church with a PhD in New Testament and an interest in most things medieval, monastic, and liturgical. My chief job is keeping up with my priestly wife and our two awesome kids. In addition to that, I earn a living, run the St Bede's Breviary, listen to loud goth/industrial music, and do some stuff for the church. I currently serve as Secretary to the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music where I'm also co-chair of the Calendar committee and chair of the Digital Publications committee.
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7 Responses to Adjusting

  1. Anastasia says:

    oh dude…I so don’t envy you. let me know when you’re settled, we should try to get togehter. I want to meet H 🙂

  2. The young fogey says:

    You’re a breviary newbie doing Matins on your own?! You get a tip of the biretta – you’re made of strong stuff.

  3. LutherPunk says:

    Liturgy is living??? Historic??? I thought we just got to make stuff up!!!!

    You are right, some things just don’t change.

    I’ll be posting some stuff on the AB hopefully today, but maybe tomorrow. I look forward to your thoughts.

  4. Derek the Ænglican says:

    Well, fogey, my dissertation is on early medieval gospel interp. Most of the exegetical homilies of the period are properly located with the Night Office. As a result, I know its structure and elements well from the academic side. That’s helped a lot. (I.e., I already know what a nocturn is supposed to look like and how it changes on different days.) I just have to remember that it’s three benedictions, readings, etc. (secular use) rather than four (monastic use)… 😉

  5. David B. says:

    Derek,
    Glad to see you all are settling in, and I see things haven’t changed much as far as classes go. I assume you are taking classes where I think you are. At least things are consistent if anything.

    LP,
    Liturgy should be our playground right? A chance to test every new-fangled hokey idea that comes our way! At least that is the impression I got from the chapel at grad school. As you know the only time I went was when Dr. H was the celebrant, and I believe he has retired, right?

  6. Derek the Ænglican says:

    Yes, the Jumping One has retired. Actually, David, I’m sitting-in because I’ll be teaching the next two sections that relate to the topic of your website… Let’s just say it may be a little different from how things were done in the past.

  7. LutherPunk says:

    To respond to your question left on my blog: just call me! We are looking forward to it!

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